Community gardens are a great way to save money, improve your life and share the load of gardening responsibilities. From garden planning to freezing and canning, gardening as a group is a smart idea.

Save Money

It’s a well-known fact that gardening reduces the tab at grocery stores. Participation in community gardens can also save money in your local garden center and when shopping through gardening catalogs. By sharing the costs of tools, supplies and seeds, the group can take greater advantage of bulk purchasing, sales on more expensive items, special purchases and shipping costs. Special offers are often a help in catering to member tastes for certain fruits, vegetables and herbs. Many community garden groups share magazine subscriptions and pool personal recipes into a fundraising cookbook to further reduce costs.

Improve Your Life

Tending community gardens alongside your neighbors eases the stress of loneliness. The fresh air and exercise involved in gardening can reduce blood pressure, balance blood sugar and improve circulation, all of which contribute to general well-being and ease the debilitating symptoms of various health conditions. Some beds can be elevated to table height or containers placed on tables, to accommodate wheelchairs, back pain, hernias and other issues. Hand tool handles can be adapted in many ways for those who cannot grip typical handle shapes, due to arthritis, autism or cerebral palsy. Eating locally and organically grown produce will reduce your exposure to toxic agricultural chemicals, thus sparing your nervous system, liver and kidneys, among others.

Share the Load

Building, sowing, watering and weeding can all add up quickly on the shoulders of a lone country gardener. However, divide these tasks among a group of neighbors and it’s no longer a burden, but a time of togetherness. For those who cannot complete certain tasks, others can help fill in those gaps. Members of community gardens share the load of harvesting, preservation by canning, freezing or dehydrating, as well as cleaning and preparing the gardens for winter and spring. Some groups hold harvest festivals, with music, games, awards and feasts. Visit my profile for more Country Gardening Tips.…

Every time we are in the family room we see this little yellow bird watching us! He pecks at the window and sits on the outside sill and just looks in until Clifford sees him. We have no idea why he is so fascinated with us. We have our very own little bird voyeur.

This morning has been fantastic, I had 4 hours to myself. I went to a butt kicking yoga sculpt class and then stopped at Trader Joe’s for lots of fish and a few other fun things. I was in the mood for taco’s and saw pre marinated pollo asada, shredded cheese and some whole wheat tortillas. I quickly cooked the chicken and placed it on the tortillas with some of the shredded cheese, organic mixed greens and a bit of black bean and corn salsa from Newman’s Own. So easy and so good, craving satisfied.…

5 Ways to Garden Together as a Family - FineGardening

Preschoolers are busy soaking up information, processing it, and applying it to their daily lives and most love being outside and playing in the dirt. So, why not spend a little time gardening with them? It is a great learning opportunity and does not require a ton of knowledge. A child’s wonder never ceases when it comes to nature and given just a little bit of information, they will take off and learn more than you would ever imagine. Gardening with your preschooler teaches them about where their food comes from and how it is created. It shows them the importance of the soil, sun, and water. And most importantly, they get to play in the dirt and spend quality time with you! Here are some tips for successfully gardening with your preschooler.

Make Your Plan. The most important thing to remember is that you will probably end up doing the most work on your garden, so plan accordingly. You’ll want to pick easy to grow plants but also something the child will be interested in growing and later eating. Sunflowers are fairly easy, fast growing, and beautiful. Peas and beans come in many varieties and are bush or climbing. Tomatoes are hard to start from seed but a purchased plant tends to be fairly hardy and produces many fruits. Also, take into consideration any size constraints. Some plants grow well in containers and would be ideal for growing on a small deck or patio. Other plants, such as strawberries, can be grown in hanging baskets. Contact your local garden center for help picking out which plants will grow best in your area as well as for ideal planting times.

Stick to the Basics. Preschoolers, although interested and excited by everything, still have a limited attention span, so the details are not that important in the beginning. They really just need the basics to start and will most certainly follow up with hundreds of questions. Start very generally by explaining how the seed needs soil, water, and sun to make it healthy and help to grow big and strong, just like we do.

As you see the various wildlife while working with your plants, you can explain how each has a connection to the plants. Some animals are helpful, while others can be harmful. Bees collect pollen from the flowers on the plant to help pollinate and produce the fruits and vegetables that you eat. Spiders eat some of the bugs that would otherwise eat your plant. Worms help enrich the soil. At every turn, there will be an opportunity to teach your preschooler. But, do not be concerned about getting to every detail. Children at this age are so full of questions, that they will determine the path of the conversation with their questions and observations.

Be Flexible and Have Fun! The experience may not go as perfectly and smoothly as you had in mind so try to just go with the flow. Do not be afraid to fail. The plants may not grow and if that’s the case you can try again, try something different, or if nothing else, take them to a local farmer’s market or pick-your-own farm. They can learn just as well by seeing the local producers with their fresh fruits and veggies or by picking their own blueberries. Failure to grow your own plants can be a lesson in how much work and knowledge it can take to put food on the table.

Cater the experience to your preschooler’s interests. My son usually ends up digging a hole nearby in search of buried treasure, while I do the weeding and pruning. But, he loves picking the vegetables, sometimes before they are really ready, watering, and looking for the first hint of green making its way out of the soil. We plant all kinds of stuff and I let him participate in the parts that interest him. Preschoolers learn much more when the experience is fun and they will be just as excited to grow, pick, and eat one fruit or vegetable as they would be with a whole garden.…

Instagram is a powerful platform; it has around 300 million active monthly users. With this vast amount of people, the market for your product is enormous. The number of potential customers is unimaginable. The century-old question remains – how to attract or buy real active instagram followers for your business?

The key to successful marketing is to attract potential clients with a great product and an impressive commercial. That’s why you have to set up your profile accordingly. Remember to interact with your followers, because every one of them represents a potential client. It’s important to talk with your followers about their impressions and get some feedback. Try to improve the quality of your product through the opinions of your followers.

Social networks and integration

Social networks are the most important thing on the Internet. These modern times brought great wonders upon us, and one of those is the social network marketing power. Don’t forget to link your account to every social media account you own. Start with Facebook, Twitter, Google +, and YouTube.

 

These four platforms will help you create a massive base of authentic and genuine followers. If you want to be successful, you have to communicate with people and find out what they want, and what they need. The precise analysis is the key to good marketing.

Being present in a large number of social networks is crucial for successful business. This method of marketing triggers a domino effect, in simple words, when “a friend of a friend” refers you to someone, it only grows larger.

Create and upload quality content

Now that you have set up your marketing network by linking your account to social media, it is time to start uploading quality content. Instagram is a harsh environment; you have to invest one hundred percent of your time and effort to succeed. Quality content on Instagram means that you have to pay attention to details. You have to make photos of excellent quality, and you have to learn about editing.

 

When you acquire these skills, start uploading business-related pictures. The visual aspect is the most important parameter of good marketing on Instagram. You present your business with these pictures, be sure they’re top-quality.

22 Ways to Get More Instagram Followers Right Now

The conclusion:

Instagram is one of the best social platforms you can use to promote your business. With a massive amount of daily users, it’s nearly impossible not to find a suiting market for your business. If you follow some simple rules and remember to use the hashtag, you should attract many followers in a short period. Be creative and turn on your imagination, find a way to draw attention to your product.

 

Use other social media to promote your Instagram account. Make a charity event on Facebook or Twitter and contribute to the community in that way. The possibilities are endless; you just need a little bit of creativity and persistence. Being persistent and patient is the most important part of being successful and satisfied.…

Last night I had a monthly dinner for The Little Black Dress Club and we headed to Hells Kitchen in Minneapolis for some music, drinks and dinner. I love going to the dinners for the The Little Black Dress Club because I always meet new people, last night I knew four of the six and it was so great meeting Rita and Laura. Everyone has such an interesting story and we always have a wide variety of ages. We had from 25 to 60 at dinner and we had great conversation and were laughing almost the whole night. We even had a few people come up to us and ask us what we were doing to have so much fun.

I had a Foxy Fosse martini that has ginger infused vodka and a basil lemonade, it was delicious. It had that nice bite of ginger but the basil lemonade was not too sweet, it would be great during the summer.

For my entree I had the Ham and Pear Crisp which Hell’s Kitchen is famous for, 4 of us ended up getting the same thing and we all loved it.

Here is the group from last night- Laura, Christine, Michelle, me, Rita and Kristina. Such a great group of ladies…

15+ Best Wine Subscription Boxes 2021 - Top Wine Subscription Gifts

You realize just how much stuff you have when you start packing for a move, tonight’s realization was just how much wine and liquor we have! For starters, we don’t even really drink hard alcohol but somehow we had two full boxes of it. The third box we had gotten from the liquor store just started our wine collection. There are still about 30 bottles in our wine cabinet and a full mini wine fridge. That is a lot of wine to move…

Every vegetable gardener always plans on an improved vegetable garden next year. Dreams of improved garden vegetable production dance through our heads, we want more vine ripe tomatoes, bigger cabbage heads and longer production time for our squash. Fall gardening is the way to make those gardening dreams a reality next year by cleaning up the vegetable garden and improving the garden soil.

Several fall gardening projects need to be done for improved vegetable production next year. Here are some fall gardening tips that will get you started making your vegetable gardening dreams come true.

Clean out all vegetable plants that are have ceased production. Inspect the garden plants as you clear them out of the garden, if they have no bugs or evidence of disease, throw them on the compost pile to be added back to the garden soil next year. If the plants are bug infested or diseased, dispose of them, you don’t want to re-introduce those back into your garden next year. Cucumber beetles, squash bugs, corn borers and potato bugs over-winter in their garden plant’s name sake if the plant is left in the vegetable garden

Garden bugs or disease may have even been a problem in vegetable production this year. While fall gardening, make a note of any garden bugs or disease so you will be prepared with organic or commercial methods of preventing and/or ridding your vegetable garden of these problems next year.

Fall gardening in a warm climate will permit you to plant and harvest a few more garden vegetables. Mid-August through September are good times to plant spinach, collards, kale, lettuce, turnips and radishes.

Planting a fall cover crop in your vegetable garden improves the soil for better vegetable production next year. Fall gardening cover crops include small grains, grasses, legumes that help prevent soil erosion, cut fertilizer costs, reduces the need for herbicides and other pesticides and improves soil health. Next year, you’ll just till in the fall cover crop. Planting a cover crop as part of your fall gardening ritual this year is an easy way to achieve improved vegetable production next year.

Another fall gardening tip for improved vegetable production is now is the time to add manure to your garden. Composted manure is the best and no more than 3 inches deep. You can add cow manure, till it in the soil, then plant a fall cover crop. Fall gardening double impact for improved garden vegetable production through improved soil.

A little fall gardening goes a long way for improved vegetable production next year.…


No, it wasn’t rainy today, but it was last week.  I took this picture last Monday when I walked to Whole Foods after my job interview had been postponed.  At first I thought it was going to be too rainy to walk over there, but it wasn’t bad at all, because my umbrella kept me dry.  There were lots of people out that day, using their umbrellas, which surprised me.  It seems like the rain would have kept them in.

I spent an hour (two?) in Whole Foods, which is the longest I’ve spent in one before.  I looked at everything, and I mean everything.  It was fantastic.  Then I bought ingredients for a Mexican fiesta and headed back home.

It was rainy and gloomy outside, yet very beautiful.  It smelled like spring… like rain drops and lilacs.  It just seemed so perfect out, I had to snap a picture.

I wish today would have been as lovely, but it wasn’t.  Today was the first bad day I’ve had in Chicago.  A bad day at work ruins your whole day, unfortunately.  I’m in a funk and there’s no coming out of it.  I’m hoping for better days there in the future.  I think I have to develop a tougher shell if I’m going to make it in Chicago, and not let things bother me so much.

I’m feeling homesick, too.  I miss my mom, dad and sisters something fierce.

So anyway, I was going to write about my first Cubs game, but I’m not feeling it.  I think I’ll just bake some brownies, drink some chardonnay, and throw myself a little pity party.

I hope your day was better than mine!…

Do you want to earn money through a website? With the right approach, you can make plenty of profits with a well constructed site, however it is something that is very mush easier said than done. Starting on this path means getting the best tool to build your website with. Site Build It or SBI is one such tool that has the potential to help you create a profit pulling website by giving literally giving you the keys to success. Having a website is easy to achieve, having a website that converts traffic into sales is a different thing entirely. If you have a website that is failing to convert then you are wasting your time. With Site Build It, you’ll get help every step of the way, all the way to the creation of your website. With Site Build It, your chances of profits with your site are highly increased. This article is an honest review of Site Build It and compares it to the other website creation programs and tools available out there.

Creating a web site is no longer a big deal. Building a website that will bring in a profit is an other thing entirely. There are some easy tips to follow in order to produce a profitable website; if you fail to adhere to these simple rules, your website will likely fail. Nowadays, the external marketing that you do for your site isn’t enough because ultimately, it has to convert well. If you find yourself struggling to produce a profitable website it is in your interest to look into ‘Site Build It!’; this is a great bit of software that will take you through the website creation process. Dr. Ken Evoy, author of such information products as Make Your Words Sell and Make Your Site Sell is the man behind Site Build It, and you know with a creator like that it’s got to be good. In this article we will be reviewing Site Build It and examine how it can help you start your own profitable website from scratch.

Market research is arguably the most important step before you start working on your site. Failure to successfully target the correct market will inevitably result in failure. It tends to be a tedious job to market your product manually, and can become quite boring at times. Site Build It gives you a completely new tool that brainstorms for you, and cuts out all that tedious manual research. The program will assist you in finding specialty markets that will be particularly interested in the product you are providing. Another great aspect of Site Build It is the fact you do not need any expertise in CSS or HTML to use it effectively. Simply follow the step by step guide, and you will have yourself a well designed website in next to no time. You can edit your site further down the road to keep on top of changing trends without any trouble at all. The number of tools and the quality of tools you get with this program are wonderful. There is no set way to design your site, the tool is very adaptable which results in websites looking completely unique.

The process is simple, but if you find yourself struggling along the way, Site Build It comes complete with video tutorials to offer further explanations. Try finding that kind of help with any other site builder. Particularly in the early stages of site creation those tutorials can be a great advantage. Even old pros will find some helpful reminders and maybe a few things they never thought of either. SBI is really a program for everyone. You can share ideas or request further help on the Site Build It forums. All questions receive an answer here; knowledgeable and qualified Site Build It members provide you with crucial information. In addition to this, what’s unique about this service is that it is the only web host that gives you everything you need to rank high in the search engines. SBI’s dedicated service-oriented members quite literally take you in hand, guiding you one step at a time through the process-even seeing your tasks through to completion and submitting your Web pages. Site Build It will automatically analyze all your pages, bit by bit, and will give you any suggestions you need to help you make your content better.

With Site Build It, you’ll be able to to ensure the success of your professional looking website and your business. Now, you’ll still have to put in a little work to get the results you need, but you can take a lot of the work off your shoulders if you get Site Build It.

With Site Build It, I created a K Swiss Sneakers site. With Site Build It, the possibilities are endless, read more on K Swiss Sneakers site.…

How to Plan a Garden to Feed a Family

One of the best ways to combine both gardening and parenting tasks effectively is to develop or improve those time-management skills and by all means, put them to use. Keep everything as organized as possible, from garden and household chores to family activities and events. Designate specific days for certain tasks. For instance, clean the house on Friday, hang out with the kids on Saturday, and weed the garden on Sunday. Regardless of what the kids think, you’re not a superhero. It’s perfectly ok to enlist the help of others, especially your fellow family members. Have the older kids pitch in to help the younger ones. Take turns rotating household and gardening chores. Encourage teamwork. For those of you that dislike a particular chore, such as washing dishes, perhaps someone else in the house doesn’t mind. Swap out these types of chores with those that others in the house don’t like to make productivity faster and easier, and perhaps more fun. Use your creativity to make these things fun. For instance, reward the kids for a job well done. Take them out for ice-cream. Give the little ones flashy stickers.

Make family time fun time by spending time together outdoors. In fact, why not consider gardening together. Grow a vegetable garden. Nothing brings a family together quite like a good, healthy meal, especially one made with freshly grown vegetables from your family’s garden. You can design your garden to suit the needs of your family or adapt an existing garden to your family’s lifestyle and interests. For instance, provide a place for the kids to play, the dog to lounge, and so on. Involve the kids. Consider letting them grow a garden of their own. They love to play in dirt anyway. This also gives you the opportunity to share one of your favorite pastimes with them and teach them all about connecting with nature. Let them choose their own plants and design their own garden space. If you have younger children and don’t have anyone to occupy their time while you’re in the garden, there are a few things you could try. For instance, keep the play area near the garden so the kids stay within easy view. Take advantage of nap time. Work on gardening chores while the kids are sleeping. This also works for household tasks as well, provided they’re quiet. Bring the play pen outdoors. This helped me greatly when my kids were small. Not only do they stay inbounds while you work in the garden, but they can also enjoy the outdoors with you. Just be sure to keep them in the shade.

Finding time to enjoy your favorite pastime while making time for your family doesn’t need to be a frustrating experience. All it takes is a little creativity to combine your responsibilities into fun-filled family activities. The memories you cultivate will last a lifetime!…